Alberta’s Jayna Doll battles for a loose ball with Eric Voss and Aaron McDonald of Ontario Monday in wheelchair basketball play at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Alberta keeps rolling in wheelchair basketball

It takes a special brand of athlete to battle it out on the wheelchair basketball court and Alberta appears to have found a fine bunch.

Team Alberta moved to 3-0 at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer with an impressive and hard-fought win 59-54 over Ontario Monday.

“I liked our discipline. (Ontario) is a very physical team, if you watched at the beginning of the game I was all over the ref. They have good chair skills and we needed to be disciplined,” said Alberta coach Darrell Nordell.

“Little bit of composure in the second half. We had our eyes up and we looked around, that really helped us. Great bunch of young kids they’re talented.”

Alberta won their first two games of the tournament on Sunday and are quickly becoming favourites of the Red Deer faithful. After winning the Canadian Championships in March, Alberta is also the top seed in at the Games and are showing why.

“We won the national championships last year, so coming in as the number one seed, everyone is coming at us,” added the head coach.

“We knew we had to practice hard ever since we won that national championship back in March.”

Brother and sister duo Bradon and Jayna Doll are two big pieces of the success for Alberta so far. Bradon and Jayna are both able-bodied players and took up the sport to support their older sister Mackenzie, who has spina bifida. They both got hooked on the game and Bradon is now in his third Canada Winter Games. It’s the first for Jayna.

“I love the atmosphere, the guys we were pushing against we’ve seen before and some of them, we’re pretty close friends. As much as it’s a competition it’s still friendly out there. It’s all high-fives in the end,” Bradon said.

“I like that you can go out there push hard against your friends but at the end of the day you’re happy and had fun.”

Bradon poured in a game-high 29 points Monday and his sister chipped in 10. He noted the experience at the games this year has been ramped up with home court advantage, but so far they have welcomed the challenge.

“There’s a larger atmosphere. There’s so much weight on our shoulders and expectation, but we’ve got a good crew and we’ve trained hard and we’re ready to compete,” he said.

Fan support has also been huge at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre and the crowd once again throwing their support behind Alberta on Monday. Nordell said that’s vital to grow the sport across Canada.

“What I have found, especially those young kids coming down, anyone that gets exposed to the game is coming back and that’s how we grow the game in Canada,” he said.

“It’s a great game and it’s an integrated sport…it’s a way to have inclusion.”

Alberta plays Tuesday afternoon at 1 p.m. against Nova Scotia at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff Team Alberta is off to a hot start at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in wheelchair basketball.

Alberta’s Jayna Doll battles for a loose ball with Eric Voss and Aaron McDonald of Ontario Monday in wheelchair basketball play at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Just Posted

Kenney pledges $100M toward Red Deer hospital improvements

Premier Jason Kenney has committed $100 million toward improvements at Red Deer… Continue reading

RDC athlete apologizes for racist slur

A Red Deer College athlete has apologized for using a racial slur… Continue reading

Innisfail man killed in single-vehicle collision

RCMP said car hit a pole just northwest of Innisfail early on Wednesday

Sylvan Lake senior injured when ambulance gurney flips at Red Deer hospital

A Sylvan Lake senior suffered a number of injuries on her way… Continue reading

VIDEO: Grumpy sea lion resists help back to water in Washington state

Crews were able to coax her into a crate to carry her back to water

Your community calendar

Feb. 19 A Liberation of Holland event is being held at the… Continue reading

David Marsden: Finally, a healthy prognosis for our hospital

The announcement of $100 million toward improvements to Red Deer Regional Hospital… Continue reading

Police intervention in Kahnawake would be act of provocation, First Nation says

Protesters reinforced a rail blockade on the Kahnawake Mohawk territory south of… Continue reading

Alberta must juggle sluggish economy, big deficits, lost jobs in upcoming budget

EDMONTON — Alberta is to bring in its new budget Thursday while… Continue reading

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

OTTAWA — Health Minister Patty Hajdu is encouraging Canadians to stockpile food… Continue reading

New Brunswick maintains position on abortions and Canada Health Act

FREDERICTON — The New Brunswick government is standing firm in its position… Continue reading

Bolder actions, words from protesters behind Quebec and Ontario rail blockades

Protesters behind rail blockades in Quebec and Ontario ramped up their actions… Continue reading

Most Read